What Should You Wear to a Black Tie Wedding?


Quick Answer

Black tie weddings require tuxedos for men, and a long, formal gown or shorter, fancy cocktail dress for women. Men should also wear a bow tie or long black tie, and a cummerbund or black waistcoat to accompany their tuxedo. Men should wear a white dress shirt with their tuxedo, black dress socks and black shoes.

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Full Answer

Women attending a black tie event should also wear high heels, and they can wear dresses in any number of colors, including jewel tones such as emerald green, ruby or black. In colder months, a dress can be worn with a fur or faux-fur shrug or stole, or an elegant velvet coat. Men can wear an overcoat and scarf.

Sometimes, black tie weddings may say on the invitation, "black tie optional," which is a direction aimed more at men's attire than women's. It means that a man can wear a dark suit with a conservative tie and shoes in place of a tuxedo. If an invitation says "creative" or "crafty" black tie, it is best to err on the side of caution and wear traditional black tie attire with a touch of whimsy. Here, there is leeway to wear a fun accessory or hat relevant to the wedding's theme.

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